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Publishing and Promoting > memoir promo for national attention

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message 1: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl Pallant | 2 comments Ginseng Tango, my memoir about living in South Korea and experiencing spiritual renewal post divorce, is getting good press locally: newspaper reviews, podcast, video interview. Readers really like the work. (Yay!) I'd like to expand my audience nationally. I'm considering spending 1k for publicity. Recommendations?

message 2: by Steven (new)

Steven (goodreadscomstevenkerry) | 138 comments Your excitement is understandable, but maybe best to really pin-point your likely audience and start a bit more conservatively. An editor for a publisher told me that indy publishers are inundated with memoirs, and that unless you are "a celebrity or someone who knows a celebrity" they do not sell. Yours may be the exception to the rule. I generally avoid reading even celebrity memoirs as I suspect that few of them tell anything more than a highly filtered or juiced-up version of the truth. The spiritual angle in yours may be of interest to female divorcees in a sort of "How Stella Got Her Groove Back" manner. Best of luck!

message 3: by H.R. (new)

H.R. Young-Lira (hryounglira) | 8 comments Hi there!
I, too, heard that non-celeb memoirs don't garner the numbers compared to other best sellers, but I think with 9 other books under your belt, a bit of exposure thru your current efforts, timely subject matter (Korean anything), and a targeted paid digital campaign, you have a shot at some traction.

Also, if you're comfortable w it, maybe set up a mini-book tour of local indie bookstores in your market (many are free, some are pay to play, and if there's an opp for a multi-author event, that's prob best).

Last, I have the name of a marketing professional I rec'd from my (hybrid) publisher. I haven't reached out bc I've only published my first book in late Feb, and come from an advertising background so aside from the odd social media post boost for audience testing, I know I'd like a bit of an audience/following before I spend on ads. But it couldn't hurt for you to shoot her a message asking for a thought or two on next steps for yourself.

DM me if you'd like me to dig that up, and I can try to give you a couple of key points/questions to get the answers you're looking for.

In the meantime, I hope that helps, and good luck!
H.R. Young-Lira

message 4: by Steven (new)

Steven (goodreadscomstevenkerry) | 138 comments I have not written my memoirs. For better or worse I must admit my memoirs would make my fiction look quite tame in comparison, lol ! I write GLBTQ-friendly fiction so my comment was not asking any info for myself, only commenting upon your own post. I have also been published in the traditional way, and self-published. You sound like you have better financial resources to market your material than many struggling authors, so that's certainly a plus. I will read the occasional memoir if it shows a bit of self-deprecation and reveals a sense of humor. Unfortunately, some people write their memoirs as if they are posing to have their likeness engraved on Mt. Rushmore. May yours avoid the pitfalls and take wings!

message 5: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl Pallant | 2 comments I appreciate your comments, Steven, and also H. R. Steven, for clarification, my memoir is full of humor. I have limited financial resources but am willing to invest it. I have not invested in my previous 11 books; they are primarily poetry and I've been the classical starving writer. The 12th one, about writing, is about to come out, and I'm ready for a few (several...many) new readers.

H.R., yes, the Korean topic is timely but I don't know how to work it and reach out.


message 6: by Sally (new)

Sally (brasscastle) | 261 comments Hi, Steven, I'm pleased to see you here. I don't know how regularly you've been posting - I monitor these posts but don't always post - but seeing your avatar made me realize I hadn't seen you for a bit.

I haven't studied the distinction between memoir and autobiography, but your comments about self-deprecation and a sense of humor ring true for me. I recently read Sidney Poitier's "The Measure of a Man," which is full of both. Poitier remained most humble throughout his life, which is most likely why he was so highly regarded as an actor - he had deep integrity and didn't put on airs. No matter what genre we are writing in, we all could benefit from reading his story.

As far as your fiction likely being far more tame than your own life experience, my mother has always upheld the old motto, "Truth is stranger than fiction." That's for sure! But I love how fiction can focus on and reveal so much truth in life, and how much life experience can give to our fiction to bring it to life.

message 7: by Steven (last edited Mar 27, 2018 07:30AM) (new)

Steven (goodreadscomstevenkerry) | 138 comments Aah...well, I didn't know anyone particularly noticed my posts, and my blog on GR has rather bitten the dust recently as I was ranting more than reflecting, but thank you for that Sally. I have also been distracted from posting as I am busy writing both music and script for a musical play about the lives of trans-gender people.

I am admittedly skeptical of most autobiographies or "memoirs". I just think they are tweaked and filtered by those writing them (or their editors) for the sake of entertainment or sensationalism. The truth of most lives is more often ironic and even contradictory to the image presented in such works. I would rather just read fiction, which tells you more about an author than they usually intend to tell or would actually tell in a supposedly honest book about themselves. In the end are we not the proudest of creatures? Thus rock 'n roll stars and assorted other celebrities and artists will paint their glory days with all the bright, blinding colors of non-stop partying, scandal, and misadventures, but calibrate the darker side, the depression, the disappointments, the boredom of repeating their greatest successes for the public's entertainment over and over, etc., if not choose to leave much of it out altogether.

message 8: by Sally (new)

Sally (brasscastle) | 261 comments Steven wrote: "...busy writing both music and script for a musical plays..."

I've never attempted writing a play - I can only imagine the challenges it presents. Although one would think it is quite limited, given the need for props and open to much interpretation by directors, producers, and actors, it seems like it holds vast potential, as perhaps the ultimate in storytelling. I went to a play with my mother years ago - I think it was called "Black Comedy" but don't hold me to that - and the premise of the story is that a fellow's neighbors use his apartment for a major party when he's gone out of town, and just as the party starts, the power goes out. The lights are on so the audience can see the action, but the actors are portraying people in the dark, which leads to much silliness, to say nothing of tripping over furniture. Quite an idea.

Happy writing!

message 9: by M.L. (new)

M.L. | 9 comments Hi Cheryl, I would suggest joining the GR group Support for Indie Authors and reading everything there on Marketing, promos, etc.(there is a ton so it takes time). I looked at your book on Amazon and the kindle version's Customer Also Bought list is impressive, The Sympathizer, The Leavers. That's good company! The main thing to watch out for in investing, aside from judicious spending, is to put a cap on it if needed. Good luck!

message 10: by Rachel (new)

Rachel Capps | 5 comments Hi Cheryl,

I've heard that too about memoirs. In fact, my own memoir was picked up by an agent in a week. Over the course of a year every publisher they tried, loved it, but because my market is so niche (stroke survivors and their family/friends) and even with the unique perspective of a brainstroke survivor (only 10% of the population survive a brainstem stroke, it's pretty catastrophic) this was not enough. Publishers didn't think they'd make enough money. My agent recommended I self publish (which I did in December).

If you look at this video It really helps teach you how to get endorsements for your book, which can help sell it.

Good luck!

message 11: by Sally (new)

Sally (brasscastle) | 261 comments Rachel wrote: "video how to get endorsements for your book ..."

Thanks for this link, Rachel!

message 12: by Rachel (new)

Rachel Capps | 5 comments No problem! I find Reedsy are full of great info :)

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